Anchor Shipping & Foundry Co Ltd Building

258 State Highway 6 (Wakefield Quay), Stepneyville, Nelson

  • Anchor Shipping & Foundry Co Ltd Building.
    Copyright: John Warren. Taken By: John Warren. Date: 16/07/2010.
  • Anchor Shipping & Foundry Co Ltd Building. Image courtesy of www.flickr.com.
    Copyright: Phil Braithwaite. Taken By: PhilBee NZ - Phil Braithwaite. Date: 19/11/2012.
  • Anchor Shipping & Foundry Co Ltd Building. Images courtesy of www.flickr.com.
    Copyright: Phil Braithwaite. Taken By: PhilBee NZ - Phil Braithwaite. Date: 19/11/2012.

List Entry Information

List Entry Status Listed List Entry Type Historic Place Category 2 Public Access Private/No Public Access
List Number 1554 Date Entered 25th November 1982 Date of Effect 25th November 1982

Locationopen/close

Extent of List Entry

Extent includes the land described as Pt Sec 1170 City of Nelson (RT NL5B/585), Nelson Land District and the building known as Anchor Shipping & Foundry Co Ltd Building thereon.

City/District Council

Nelson City

Region

Nelson Region

Legal description

Pt Sec 1170 City of Nelson (RT NL5B/585), Nelson Land District

Summaryopen/close

The Anchor Shipping & Foundry Co Ltd Building is historically significant as one of the few remnants of the heavy industry and extensive shipping that was based at Nelson’s port. It’s architectural and aesthetic significance results from its design by Arthur R. Griffin, a prolific Nelson architect who contributed greatly to the look of Nelson in the first half of the twentieth century.

Arthur Reynolds Griffin was the grandson of John Griffin the founder of Griffin & Sons Ltd, the Nelson-based biscuit company. Born and raised in Nelson, A.R. Griffin trained in architecture via the International Correspondence School based in Pennsylvania in the United States. Simultaneously, he worked as a draughtsman in the offices of JD and L Robertson before setting up his own offices in the Norwich Union Chambers. His work in Nelson was diverse and prolific including the Nelson Institute (1911, List No. 1603), the former Nelson Hospital (1925) and Nurses Home (1916), and the Church Steps (1913; List No. 253), funded by Griffin’s patron, Thomas Cawthron. He designed Nelson’s Plunket and Rest Rooms (1936; List No. 5169), and a host of commercial buildings including the Ritz Kerr Building (c.1930; List No. 3027), and the former Dalgety and Co Ltd Building (c.1930; List No. 1621). He was also successful in winning a number of design competitions, notably Hokitika’s Carnegie Free Public Library (List No. 1702) completed in 1908. It was noted in the local press that Griffin made trips to Australia and brought ideas back with him both for his commercial work, and for the hospital, illustrating the architectural connection between the two countries.

The Anchor Shipping & Foundry Co Ltd had its origins in a shipping firm and workshop established by Nathaniel Edwards, John Symons and George Bennett in 1866, and further developed by John Symons as sole proprietor in the 1870s. Alexander Brown purchased a major share of stock and assets from Symons’ estate in 1880 and the Anchor Steam Shipping Co was formed in 1883, changing its name to Anchor Shipping & Foundry Co in 1901.

The Anchor Shipping & Foundry Co building was designed by A.R. Griffin in 1927. It consisted of a range of offices, both for booking and for managers and clerks, a strong-room, had boiler-fed central heating, and allowed for extensive daylight through large steel-framed windows. It even had a dedicated clerks’ bicycle room. The Nelson Evening Mail noted that the passageway floors had been finished with ‘Rublino Tiles’; a surface which its Sydney supplier described as ‘the elastic and noiseless tread’. The flat roof was praised as a vantage point from which to assess approaching weather or vessels. After the Anchor Shipping & Foundry Co folded in 1973, the building was subsequently used as a printers, and as a distillery before being purchased by the Nelson City Council in 2013. As the building was determined to be earthquake-prone in 2017, subsequent use depends on seismic strengthening.

Linksopen/close

Construction Professionalsopen/close

Griffin, Arthur Reynolds

Griffin practised architecture in Nelson from the early 1900s to about 1960.

Arthur Reynolds Griffin was the grandson of John Griffin the founder of Griffin & Sons Ltd, the Nelson-based biscuit company. Born and raised in Nelson, A.R. Griffin trained in architecture via the International Correspondence School based in Pennsylvania in the United States. Simultaneously, he worked as a draughtsman in the offices of JD and L Robertson before setting up his own offices in the Norwich Union Chambers. His work in Nelson was diverse and prolific including the Nelson Institute (1911, List No. 1603), the former Nelson Hospital (1925) and Nurses Home (1916), and the Church Steps (1913; List No. 253), funded by Griffin’s patron, Thomas Cawthron. He designed Nelson’s Plunket and Rest Rooms (1936; List No. 5169), and a host of commercial buildings including the Ritz Kerr Building (c.1930; List No. 3027), and the former Dalgety and Co Ltd Building (c.1930; List No. 1621). He was also successful in winning a number of design competitions, notably Hokitika’s Carnegie Free Public Library (List No. 1702) completed in 1908. It was noted in the local press that Griffin made trips to Australia and brought ideas back with him both for his commercial work, and for the hospital, illustrating the architectural connection between the two countries.

FROM: Summary Report Anchor Shipping & Foundry Co Building, NELSON (List No. 1554) by M. Katz March 2020

Robertson Bros Ltd

Operated in Nelson in early 20th century. Built Anchor Shipping and Foundry Coy Building (List No. 1554)

H. J. Savage and Sons

Painting and glazing services. Operating in Nelson in early 20th Century.

Additional informationopen/close

Construction Dates

Original Construction
1927 -

Completion Date

10th March 2020

Report Written By

Meghan Katz

Information Sources

McCarthy (ed) 2019

Christine McCarthy (ed), “The Raging fury of Edwardian ornamentation” meets “a virtual frenzy of stylism”: New Zealand Architecture in 1900s: a one day symposium, Centre for Building Performance Research, Faculty of Architecture and Design, Victoria University, Wellington, 2019.

Paul Addison, ‘Provincial Architect with a competitive edge: Arthur Griffin, the early years’, in Christine McCarthy (ed)

Bowman, 2008

Ian Bowman, ‘Conservation Plan, Dalton House, Nelson, October 2008: Appendix I’

The Prow

http://www.theprow.org.nz/

Ian Bowman & Russell Dickson, ‘Anchor Foundry’, The Prow, http://www.theprow.org.nz/enterprise/anchor-foundry/#.XkXujSgzaUk Accessed 14 February 2020

Other Information

A fully referenced upgrade report is available on request from the Central region Office of Heritage New Zealand.

Please note that entry on the New Zealand Heritage List/Rarangi Korero identifies only the heritage values of the property concerned, and should not be construed as advice on the state of the property, or as a comment of its soundness or safety, including in regard to earthquake risk, safety in the event of fire, or insanitary conditions.